Jayne Mansfield

By Tony Rizzo
HOLLYWOOD — Disney’s re-release of “Beauty and the Beast” in 3D has been a big moneymaker. That has prompted a remake of the l946 classic live-action French version, which starred Jean Marais. Guillermo Del Toro is set to produce, write and direct the reboot, which likely will star “Harry Potter’s” Emma Watson as Belle. Del Toro gave us “Mimic” (’97), “Blade II” (’02), “Hellboy” (’06), “Pan’s Labyrinth” (’06) and “Hellboy II” (’08). In addition, he produced “Kung Fu Panda 2” and “Puss in Boots,” and wrote both parts of the upcoming “Hobbit” films being released this year and next. Del Toro also is set to direct a remake of “Frankenstein” and “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.” He recently announced he’d produce and direct a 3D remake of Disney’s “The Haunted Mansion.” In his hands, “Beauty and the Beast” is sure to be as tender and touching as the original ’46 version.
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Kodak’s recent financial woes, which led to its filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, also has forced it to drop the naming rights to The Kodak Theatre where the Oscars are broadcast. This may give the Academy an out of its contract with the theater, which the Oscars have outgrown. The Academy has been considering other venues, such as the Nokia Theatre. Seems 3,300 seats are just not enough to hold all the people who desperately want to attend the awards.
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Billy Bob Thornton has directed and written his first film in more than a decade. “Jayne Mansfield’s Car” is a drama, set in the l960s, about two families from different countries whose cultures clash. Billy Bob won an Oscar in l997 for the screenplay of “Swing Blade.” This film features an incredible cast: Oscar winner Robert Duval, John Hurt, “The Birds” Tippi Hedren, Kevin Bacon and “Terminator 2” villain and “X-Files” regular Robert Patrick. Also top-lining is Ray Stevenson, who had “Kill the Irishman,” “Thor” and “The Three Musketeers” out last year and the recently completed “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” starring red-hot Channing Tatum.

The title refers to the car accident in which sex symbol Jayne Mansfield died in l967. I knew and photographed Jayne many times and remember when she headlined The Latin Quarter nightclub, owned by Barbara Walters’ father, Lou Walters. Jayne came out of her dressing room to pose for pictures, wearing the lowest-cut dress I’d ever seen on a woman. When I asked her to take a deep breath, on a dare, she did, and had the most wonderful wardrobe malfunction that put Janet Jackson’s little Super Bowl wardrobe malfunction to shame … if you know what I mean.

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© 2012 King Features Synd., Inc.